How To Understand Your Medical Marijuana Treatment Plan
Updated: Oct 27, 2020
As Florida joins the ranks of the many states who are taking measures to legalize medical cannabis, we must take responsibility as both professionals and individuals to learn the new systems organized by the state and the roles these systems may play in our lives depending on how we choose to get involved.
From the medical doctor’s point of view, we are challenged to educate ourselves first and foremost for the benefit of our patients who will inevitably depend on the medical community for questions and answers about medical marijuana. Becoming a certified cannabis doctor in the state of Florida relies on meeting stringent requirements in order to obtain licenses and maintain the necessary knowledge of how this medicine works in the human body and how the evolving laws pertain to operating business in the medical marijuana industry.
While all Florida licensed cannabis doctors must meet the same requirements, not all will adhere to the same standards of practice. This is why the patient needs to learn how to be selective in their choice of a certified cannabis doctor so they can trust they are receiving top notch compassionate and quality care.
In recognizing this need for trustworthy and properly educated doctors to provide patients the most valuable resources and information for their health, our team at ColoWell America has made a dedicated approach to being the best of the best of medical marijuana doctors in the state - not just Tampa alone. Two major factors we have identified as areas of need for better patient education and care when it comes to medical cannabis recommendations include: 1) how patients are diagnosed and the dosage prescribed, and 2) how patients are followed up with and taught to understand their new treatment plan.
1) Patient care should always depend on the unique specifics of any case including all factors and conditions.
For example, an elderly first-time cannabis user who is being recommended medical marijuana should not be given excessive doses. The result could be negative for the inexperienced patient, who might have a fall or feel ill from being overly medicated. This might then discourage them from continuing use of a medical treatment option that, when advised on and monitored for proper use, could provide a great benefit. A good medical cannabis doctor should provide any patient with the most minimal dose to begin with and recommend gradual increases along with follow-up appointments and evaluations to hear what the patient is reporting and determine how the plan for treatment should continue with the patient’s best interest in mind. For the doctor to be able to work with the patient closely, they can learn how the individual is responding to the medication and how their form of use is working or not working for them. Adjustments to medical marijuana recommendations are common while the doctor aims to find the best fit for your needs. Only with monitored care can medical professionals know how to best treat and develop a plan for long term care.
2) The state mandates cannabis doctors to follow specific criteria for following up with patients, but does not guide doctors on how to develop treatment plans with patients that meet the state regulated certifications for obtaining medical marijuana and keeping registered cardholders active during the registration period.
Time and time again we meet patients who do not understand what is required of themselves to maintain an approved and active account as a registered Florida State medical cannabis user. We work hard to educate users on what their expectations are for becoming cardholders and what expenses are involved over the course of the year.
For example, a user registers once annually to hold a record with the state for one year (or 365 days) as a registered medical marijuana patient, involving an annual fee to the state. Once this registration is approved, the patient must make an appointment to see a certified cannabis doctor to open a certificate with the state that is valid for 210 days (or 7 months) that allows the patient to receive orders for medical marijuana from a doctor, which they can then use to purchase product at a Florida dispensary. If the patient does not maintain the active status of this certificate through a doctor within the 210 day period, the certificate will be closed and can only be opened again by a certified cannabis doctor. Furthermore, medication orders placed by your doctor for you for use at a dispensary, including proper dosage instructions and types of usage allowable, are only valid for up to 70 days, upon which time they will expire and can therefore not be used. So, a patient must also follow-up with their doctor every 70 days to continue their orders as open for use at the dispensary of their choice. At this time, their doctor will re-evaluate their conditions and needs as discussed in part 1 and make any changes to a patient’s orders so they are continually receiving the best and proper care for their medical cannabis treatment.
Confusing, right? Well, it doesn’t have to be. That’s why we suggest starting a discussion with your doctor about what medical marijuana involves as a whole, from state registration to what you will experience at the dispensary. We are constantly developing programs to inform you on the latest medical cannabis news and programs so we have the right answers for you. Any one of our team at ColoWell America is happy to take your call about medical cannabis and will even work with you to schedule your appointments in advance so you don’t have to worry about deadlines and extra costs incurred from failing to keep your account with the state active and valid.
Medical marijuana in Florida is still new and evolving. Let us help you know what you need to be a thriving patient today.
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